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Jason Taylor goes all in for charity with Hard Rock poker tournament


Jason Taylor, the Miami Dolphins’ legendary defensive end and recent inductee into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, will host a poker fundraiser March 29 at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino (1 Seminole Way, Hollywood, 800-937-0010,

And he’ll play. He jokes that he might do something crazy or stupid to win.

The event is attached to the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown, taking place through April 9.

The Jason Taylor/WPT Foundation Charity Event is a no-limit hold ’em re-entry event with a $300 buy-in. More than $10,000 in prizes are up for grabs, including a $3,500 entry into the showdown’s $2 million championship and a four-day resort package in Cancun with $1,000 for travel.

“Between our portion of the entries as well as the silent auction we hold, we raised more than $20,000 last year,” says Seth Levit, the foundation’s executive director.

Levit says the funds supported children’s programs, including the Reading Room after-school program.

“We had this last year for the first time,” says Taylor, who lives in Plantation and has three kids. “WPT was in town, and Seminole Hard Rock was hosting. They were wanting to support a local charity. We have connections with the tribe and, really, it was a no-brainer for us.”

Besides raising money for his foundation last year, Taylor had fun. He placed third in the tournament.

“I like to play poker, and tons of my friends do,” Taylor says. “I’m a hold ’em guy. With some games like Omaha high low, there’s too much thinking. I like to look at my cards and know [fast] I’m in or I’m out. I’m a really lazy poker player.”

That’s why when he plays, it’s usually with friends at a house instead of at a casino.

“I love the camaraderie,” he says. “Trash each other. Smoke a cigar. But at some point, I’m gonna do something crazy to win a big pot or get taken out.”

He adds, “I get a little impatient sometimes. Sometimes, my attention span gets short, so I get tired and fold. I try not to play for money. At some point, I know I’m going to get bored and do something stupid.”

Before the event, a party will be held for players, including Taylor, from 5 to 7 p.m.

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